A WOMEN who won a tidy £55,000 in the Postcode Lottery has revealed exactly what she will do with the winnings.
Leanne Hanley, 53, was originally from Edinburgh but moved to Scunthorpe, Lincolnshire, with her husband and younger son over two decades ago.
Leanne, now a mother of two, has always wanted to return to Scotland’s capital and now she can fulfill her dream by winning £55,555 with the People’s Postcode Lottery.
The mother, who works behind the perfume counter at a Boots branch, wants to return to Edinburgh to spend more time with her 74-year-old mother, Valerie Millar, who still lives in the city.
Leanne, formerly of Dumbbiedykes, Edinburgh, says Live in Edinburgh: “I’m speechless, and anyone will tell you that’s not like me. This is more money than I have ever held in my life.
“I don’t want to think about what I’m going to do with this money until I know it’s real. But this is life changing.
“I want to be closer to Edinburgh. I still have family there, so it would be nice to get back down that road a bit. I mean, why don’t you want to go back to Scotland.
“My husband is down here, but he would 100% love to move out.”
In total, there were 17 winners, including Leanne, who shared the Millionaire Street’s £1 million jackpot, thanks to their postcode DN16 2LQ.
Each ticket is worth £55,555, with one winner doubling the cash prize by playing with two tickets.
After realizing she had won, she informed her husband, 52-year-old road traffic management expert, during a Facetime call while he was working in India.
The couple are also hoping to treat son Kyle, 23, who works for homeware store Dunelm, and daughter Niamh, 20, who is studying interior design at Falmouth University.
Leanne added that she also wants to go on vacation with her family.
While she said San Francisco would be a dream vacation, she also said she loves the sun.
“When you can win as well as charities benefit, it’s win-win,” she said.
“It’s great that everyone has a little something, rather than a big win and nobody else benefits from it.”
Postcode Lottery Ambassador Danyl Johnson, presenter Leanne with her golden envelope.
He said: “It is amazing to know how victories like this can change the lives of people like Leanne.
“It is very special to see the neighbors win together.
“But the local charities in Scunthorpe also have something to celebrate, thanks to our players.
“People’s Postal Code Lottery players have raised over £1.1 billion for charities and thousands of local causes.
“Neighbors win and charities win. That’s what we’re all about.”
Earlier this month, it was revealed where the UK’s “luckiest” is to win the Postcode Lottery.
Also in June, a former Royal Marine revealed that he had won the entire £400,000 People’s Postal Code Lottery prize for his region thanks to his late wife.
In May, a former nurse raked in £400,000 by winning the Postal Code Lottery but her sister who lives downstairs got nothing.
HOW TO GET HELP
Gambling addiction can be extremely serious.
If you or a loved one is affected by gambling addiction, there are a number of places you can seek help:
- National Problem Gambling Clinic: An NHS specialist clinic for gamblers (England and Wales only, for people aged 16 and over).
- GamCare: The UK’s main support and advice organization, and runs the National Gambling Helpline (0808 8020 133).
- Anonymous Gambler: A charity that uses the same 12-step approach as Alcoholics Anonymous.
- GamAnon: A support group for family and friends, run by the people behind Gamblers Anonymous.
- The Samaritans: 24-hour service for people with suicidal thoughts (116 123).
- Subline: Toll-free helpline for under-18s (0800 1111).
There are several different treatments available for gambling:
- Residency program: around the clock for particularly serious gamblers.
- Cognitive behavioral therapy: A type of talk therapy, with six to 15 sessions, can be prescribed by the NHS.
- Hypnotherapy: Through the power of suggestion, therapists hope to change problematic patterns in their clients’ minds.
There are also several ways you can handle gambling at home:
- Block your access to gambling: Block gambling sites and stay away from casinos, betting shops and even pubs with slot machines.
- Give others control of your money: This eliminates the temptation to chase losses, or try to gamble to get out of debt.
- I’m busy: As with any addiction, you will go through a phase of withdrawal. Keep yourself busier than usual for the first week or so.
- Talk: Talk to a therapist/medical professional and open up to at least one trusted friend/family member.